The UK news and current affairs magazine Private Eye reported recently on an appearance by Johan Eliasch in front of a Commons select committee. Private Eye notes that he seemed to have little interest in the matter under discussion.
Gordon Brown, the UK Prime Minister, will today launch the long-awaited report of his Special Representative on Forests and Renewable Energy, on how to save the world’s forests and prevent climate change.
The social impacts of REDD on indigenous peoples and local communities who are dependent on forests has been controversial since REDD was included in the Bali Road Map at COP 13 in 2007. But over the past ten years, debate over whether REDD projects are desirable has been, to some extent at least, marginalised by a focus on how to manage the risks of REDD, and how to promote benefits through REDD.
Gangster Squad is a film set in Los Angeles in the late 1940s. The Police Chief decides to set up a special unit to fight gangster Mickey Cohen. The six members of the police vigilante “Gangster Squad” carry guns but no badges.
Under a REDD mechanism, forests are valued primarily as stores of carbon. REDD aims to save the forests by trading the carbon stored in the forests, making the trees worth more standing than cleared. For REDD to save the forests, we have to create a market for forest carbon.
A new report by the Accra Caucus “proposes an alternative vision for achieving the objective of reducing deforestation, arguing for policies and actions that would tackle the drivers of deforestation, rather than focusing exclusively on carbon.” Download the report here: in English; Spanish and French.
It seems to have dawned on Guyana’s president, Bharrat Jagdeo, that you can’t reduce deforestation if you don’t have any deforestation in the first place. Guyana has large areas of forest and low levels of deforestation. So, in 2008, Jagdeo commissioned the consulting firm McKinsey to find a way out of the problem.
One of the key issues related to REDD is that of risk. All trade carries an element of risk, but there is general agreement that the risks associated with forest carbon trading might be substantial, and possibly unresolvable, at least in the short term.